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Old 07-29-2008, 12:55 AM   #61
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Originally Posted by yolland View Post
I don't know that there's anyone in here who can credibly claim to have been even close to evenhanded in their posts on the campaign. Dread, maybe; Bluer White at times. The thing is, with the exception of a few threads, we haven't really been debating the actual campaign issues and developing arguments for or against particular candidates' proposals for addressing them. The focus has mostly been on the personality contest--the gaffes!! the flip-flops!! the skeletons in the closet!!--as if the candidates were figureheads and little else. You're not likely to get an even remotely balanced dialogue out of that approach, and I'm not sure how many of us really want one.
I'd like to credibly claim to be close to evenhanded. . . not ACTUALLY evenhanded, but at least close!

I agree with Irvine though. . .I think the forum reflects what's going on in the wider world in regards to how we approach the campaign. I'd say 90% of the stuff that's taking up our time in here in regards to either candidate is pretty much nonsense. (I even admitted above to taking a certain enjoyment in the rabid nature of some posts with viewpoints opposing mine so clearly I'm chief among sinners here). That said, I would welcome a balanced dialogue, though again as Irvine said, I don't know that there is much difference in Obama and McCain in what they'd actually do in office when all is said and done, so maybe there wouldn't be that much to debate.

I've always felt that most presidents don't deserve as much credit or blame as they get for what takes place during their time in office. . .at least until Bush. He really upended my thinking of how much damage one guy can do, and so at the very least I wouldn't want someone getting into office that would do the same. At present I don't see either McCain or Obama as likely to do so. But then I can't honestly claim to have seen it coming with Bush either. Truthfully, I think he might have done all right if 9/11 hadn't happened.

So for me, the best thing I can do is try to suss out who is less likely to turn into a Bush once in office. I know deep really fears that Obama's inexperience make him dangerously capable of turning into another Bush. I think the reason I don't worry about that to the extent he does, is because I don't believe it was Bush's inexperience that was the cause of his awful presidency. Among other things, I think it was his tendency to surround himself with loyalists--I don't see either McCain or Obama doing that. . .at least so far. So that's something in both their favor.
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Old 07-29-2008, 01:47 AM   #62
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a final "fuck you" from Bush?

Quote:
Bush to leave a record budget deficit of $482 billion

By Maura Reynolds, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
July 29, 2008

WASHINGTON -- President Bush will leave his successor with a record-high budget deficit of $482 billion, according to an administration estimate released Monday.

White House officials blamed the slowing economy and a $150-billion bipartisan stimulus package for the worsening picture for the 2009 fiscal year, but Democrats cited the president's tax cuts and fiscal management over his eight years in office.

"The important point to remember is that near-term deficits are both temporary and manageable if, and only if, we keep spending in check, the tax burden low and the economy growing," said Jim Nussle, director of the Office of Management and Budget, which released the budget report -- the last of Bush's presidency.

Nussle argued that although it would be the highest deficit in history, it was manageable as a percentage of the country's economic output -- roughly 3.3% of the gross domestic product. And he said the deficit for fiscal 2008, at $389 billion, would be somewhat less than anticipated.

"The best way to compare a deficit is by your ability in the economy to manage that deficit," Nussle told reporters in a White House briefing. "We have a plan to address that deficit and bring it down, which I think is a responsible one."

The budget office's report also predicted that the country's gross domestic product would grow by 1.6% in 2008, down from February's projection of 2.7%. The lower figure was attributed to higher-than-expected prices for oil and other commodities, problems in the credit markets and the continuing difficulties in the housing market.

Democrats on Capitol Hill blamed the revised deficit figures on Bush's large tax cuts and freewheeling spending.

"If we gave Olympic medals for fiscal irresponsibility, President Bush would take the gold, the silver and the bronze, because he's got the three highest record deficits ever," said Sen. Kent Conrad (D-S.D.), chairman of the Senate Budget Committee. "He sets records in every single category: 2009 would be the gold; 2004 the silver; 2008 the bronze."

Rep. John M. Spratt Jr. (D-S.C.) noted that Bush inherited a budget surplus from his Democratic predecessor, so the blame for the poor fiscal performance rests with him.

"Mr. Bush came to office with the biggest surpluses in history and he will leave office with the biggest deficit in history. That's the bottom line," said Spratt, chairman of the House Budget Committee.

Nussle defended the president, noting that he faced unexpected challenges after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

"He had an underfunded military, in fact was running a deficit when it came to our ability to respond to homeland security and international intelligence and making sure that our country was protected," Nussle said. "So while mathematically there may have been a surplus, there were many underlying deficits that the president had to deal with that became manifest on Sept. 11 and beyond."

Conrad complained that Bush has long refused to acknowledge the role that his tax cuts have played in the deficit projections. He also accused Bush of using deceptive budget practices, including funding much of the Iraq war off the regular budget.


and another final, "fuck you, i'm fifteen years old, i'll kill who i want!" from Bush as well?

Quote:
Execution by Military Is Approved by President
By STEVEN LEE MYERS

WASHINGTON — President Bush on Monday approved the first execution by the military since 1961, upholding the death penalty of an Army private convicted of a series of rapes and murders more than two decades ago.

As commander in chief, the president has the final authority to approve capital punishment under the Uniform Code of Military Justice, and he did so on Monday morning in the case of Pvt. Ronald A. Gray, convicted by court-martial for two killings and an attempted murder at Fort Bragg, N.C., the White House said in a statement.

Although the Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of the death penalty in the military in 1996, no one has been executed since President Ronald Reagan reinstated capital punishment in 1984 for military crimes.

The last military execution was ordered by President Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1957, although it was not carried out by hanging until 1961. President John F. Kennedy was the last president to face the question, in 1962, but commuted the sentence to life in prison.

“While approving a sentence of death for a member of our armed services is a serious and difficult decision for a commander in chief, the president believes the facts of this case leave no doubt that the sentence is just and warranted,” the White House press secretary, Dana Perino, said in a statement after the decision was first reported by The Associated Press. “Private Gray was convicted of committing brutal crimes, including two murders, an attempted murder and three rapes.”

Mr. Bush, a supporter of the death penalty, approved the sentence after Private Gray’s case wound its way through the Army’s legal bureaucracy and the military’s courts of appeal. The secretary of the Army sought Mr. Bush’s final approval.

There are six people on the military’s death row at Fort Leavenworth, Kan. but Private Gray was the first whose sentence went to the president. Unlike in the civilian courts, where the president can overturn or commute a sentence, in the military system, he is required effectively to approve it.

It can still be appealed, which the White House suggested was all but certain, meaning an execution is not expected to occur soon, possibly not during Mr. Bush’s remaining months in office.

The military death penalty has been dormant for so long that it was also unclear what the method of execution would be.


i mean, honestly.
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Old 07-29-2008, 06:52 AM   #63
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Outrageous polling
Quote:
Republican presidential candidate John McCain moved from being behind by 6 points among "likely" voters a month ago to a 4-point lead over Democrat Barack Obama among that group in the latest USA TODAY/Gallup Poll. McCain still trails slightly among the broader universe of "registered" voters. By both measures, the race is tight.
The Friday-Sunday poll, mostly conducted as Obama was returning from his much-publicized overseas trip and released just this hour, shows McCain now ahead 49%-45% among voters that Gallup believes are most likely to go to the polls in November. In late June, he was behind among likely voters, 50%-44%.
Gallup/USA Today Poll: McCain +4 - Real Clear Politics - Elections 2008 - TIME
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Old 07-29-2008, 10:03 AM   #64
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^

All those imaginary people who think he'll win in a landslide sure look dumb today!

Quote:
WASHINGTON - The former Chief of Medical Operations for United States Air Force in Europe (USAFE) Headquarters at Ramstein Air Force Base in Germany today ripped into Senator John McCain's latest ad, which attacks Senator Barack Obama for not making a campaign event of a visit to wounded troops.

Dr. Katherine Scheirman, who was Chief of Medical Operations during Operation Iraqi Freedom, said in a statement:

"John McCain's new ad is dishonest and shameful, and I say that as the former Chief of Medical Operations. Senators Hagel and Reed confirmed to Bob Schieffer yesterday that Senator Obama visited the Combat Support Hospital in Baghdad as a part of their CODEL, with no media present.

"In Germany, Senator Obama made the right decision to respect wounded troops, and the doctors and nurses doing crucial and time-sensitive work, by not making a visit that was characterized as a campaign event by the Pentagon. Senator Obama should be thanked for putting our military above politics. And, I would hope that John McCain would think in those same terms, the next time he is put in a similar situation.

"Senator Obama has voted for the troops when John McCain has not, most recently on the new GI Bill. I am happy that Senator Obama puts the welfare of our troops above politics."
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Old 07-29-2008, 11:15 AM   #65
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No wonder Angelina stopped speaking to him.. Actually he sounds like some of the posts I've read here

Washington Times


Monday, July 28, 2008
JON VOIGHT: My concerns for America

OP-ED

We, as parents, are well aware of the importance of our teachers who teach and program our children. We also know how important it is for our children to play with good-thinking children growing up.

Sen. Barack Obama has grown up with the teaching of very angry, militant white and black people: the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Louis Farrakhan, William Ayers and Rev. Michael Pfleger. We cannot say we are not affected by teachers who are militant and angry. We know too well that we become like them, and Mr. Obama will run this country in their mindset.

The Democratic Party, in its quest for power, has managed a propaganda campaign with subliminal messages, creating a God-like figure in a man who falls short in every way. It seems to me that if Mr. Obama wins the presidential election, then Messrs. Farrakhan, Wright, Ayers and Pfleger will gain power for their need to demoralize this country and help create a socialist America.

The Democrats have targeted young people, knowing how easy it is to bring forth whatever is needed to program their minds. I know this process well. I was caught up in the hysteria during the Vietnam era, which was brought about through Marxist propaganda underlying the so-called peace movement. The radicals of that era were successful in giving the communists power to bring forth the killing fields and slaughter 2.5 million people in Cambodia and South Vietnam. Did they stop the war, or did they bring the war to those innocent people? In the end, they turned their backs on all the horror and suffering they helped create and walked away.

Those same leaders who were in the streets in the '60s are very powerful today in their work to bring down the Iraq war and to attack our president, and they have found their way into our schools. William Ayers is a good example of that.

Thank God, today, we have a strong generation of young soldiers who know exactly who they are and what they must do to protect our freedom and our democracy. And we have the leadership of Gen. David Petraeus, who has brought hope and stability to Iraq and prevented the terrorists from establishing a base in that country. Our soldiers are lifting us to an example of patriotism at a time when we've almost forgotten who we are and what is at stake.

If Mr. Obama had his way, he would have pulled our troops from Iraq years ago and initiated an unprecedented bloodbath, turning over that country to the barbarianism of our enemies. With what he has openly stated about his plans for our military, and his lack of understanding about the true nature of our enemies, there's not a cell in my body that can accept the idea that Mr. Obama can keep us safe from the terrorists around the world, and from Iran, which is making great strides toward getting the atomic bomb. And while a misleading portrait of Mr. Obama is being perpetrated by a media controlled by the Democrats, the Obama camp has sent out people to attack the greatness of Sen. John McCain, whose suffering and courage in a Hanoi prison camp is an American legend.

Gen. Wesley Clark, who himself has shame upon him, having been relieved of his command, has done their bidding and become a lying fool in his need to demean a fellow soldier and a true hero.

This is a perilous time, and more than ever, the world needs a united and strong America. If, God forbid, we live to see Mr. Obama president, we will live through a socialist era that America has not seen before, and our country will be weakened in every way.

Jon Voight is an Academy Award-winning actor who is well-known for his humanitarian work.
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Old 07-29-2008, 11:28 AM   #66
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He sounds unhinged.

It's as if there is a segment of American society that lives in constant fear of "socialism" which they see everywhere, in everyone, around the world. Must be a terrible way to be.
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Old 07-29-2008, 01:38 PM   #67
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Irvine511 View Post
a final "fuck you" from Bush?





and another final, "fuck you, i'm fifteen years old, i'll kill who i want!" from Bush as well?





i mean, honestly.
The Budget deficit is only a record if you just compare it in nominal terms. As a percentage of GDP, the current Budget deficit is less than Bill Clintons first year of office, much less than most of the Reagan and Bush Sr. years, less than the last two years of the Ford/Nixon administration, and TINY compared to the budget deficits of World War II.
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Old 07-29-2008, 02:55 PM   #68
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Originally Posted by Strongbow View Post
The Budget deficit is only a record if you just compare it in nominal terms. As a percentage of GDP, the current Budget deficit is less than Bill Clintons first year of office, much less than most of the Reagan and Bush Sr. years, less than the last two years of the Ford/Nixon administration, and TINY compared to the budget deficits of World War II.


oh, yes, the GDP canard. GDP is one of those frames meant to dilute the size of the fiscal recklessness. sure, there's some merit in giving these numbers historical context, but it isn't the GDP which is paying off government debt, it's government revenue, and it has nothing to do with the *necessity* of running up such deficits, nor does it show that the country is spending what it needs, and where it needs, nor does it reflect the fact that two wars are being paid for off the books, or the Social Security 1.3% of GDP "borrowed" from Social Security. when you add those two numbers (Iraq being roughly 1% of GDP and social security 1.3%) you begin to approach the worst year on record, 1983 (due to the S&L bailout, so a rather extraordinary set of circumstances), with a stunning 5.6% of GDP.

have we, historically, been worse? of course. but not by much.

and the reality is that *both* McCain and Obama are going to raise your taxes next year.
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Old 07-29-2008, 03:21 PM   #69
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My gosh. . .never mind the content, Voight is a terrible writer! I can't believe they'd publish something so poorly written! At least Krauthamer can put two sentences together.
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Old 07-29-2008, 03:58 PM   #70
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My gosh. . .never mind the content, Voight is a terrible writer! I can't believe they'd publish something so poorly written! At least Krauthamer can put two sentences together.
It's the Washington Times, one small step above a tabloid.
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Old 07-29-2008, 06:27 PM   #71
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WASHINGTON - The former Chief of Medical Operations for United States Air Force in Europe (USAFE) Headquarters at Ramstein Air Force Base in Germany today ripped into Senator John McCain's latest ad, which attacks Senator Barack Obama for not making a campaign event of a visit to wounded troops.

Dr. Katherine Scheirman, who was Chief of Medical Operations during Operation Iraqi Freedom, said in a statement:

"John McCain's new ad is dishonest and shameful, and I say that as the former Chief of Medical Operations. Senators Hagel and Reed confirmed to Bob Schieffer yesterday that Senator Obama visited the Combat Support Hospital in Baghdad as a part of their CODEL, with no media present.
McCain's ad was definitely below the belt. Regardless of how you feel about Obama's Iraq policies, I'm sure he cares about the troops as much or more than the next American. And it turns out Obama did visit wounded troops.

There's enough policy difference between the two guys that the McCain campaign doesn't need to be "creating" issues like this one and then airing them on weak TV spots.
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Old 07-29-2008, 08:11 PM   #72
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As for Voight's daughter, Jolie told Entertainment Weekly, "I think people assume I'm a democrat, but I'm registered independent and I'm still undecided. So I'm looking at [John McCain] as well as Obama."

She is well traveled, and has seen some of the horrors this world has to offer.

I guess she has some concerns about Obama,

I can relate.
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Old 07-29-2008, 08:13 PM   #73
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There was that scare that Brangelina was interested in Atlas Shrugged to the big screen.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atlas_Shrugged_%28film%29

And so it came to pass.
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Old 07-29-2008, 08:52 PM   #74
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I'd like to credibly claim to be close to evenhanded. . . not ACTUALLY evenhanded, but at least close!

I agree with Irvine though. . .I think the forum reflects what's going on in the wider world in regards to how we approach the campaign. I'd say 90% of the stuff that's taking up our time in here in regards to either candidate is pretty much nonsense. (I even admitted above to taking a certain enjoyment in the rabid nature of some posts with viewpoints opposing mine so clearly I'm chief among sinners here). That said, I would welcome a balanced dialogue, though again as Irvine said, I don't know that there is much difference in Obama and McCain in what they'd actually do in office when all is said and done, so maybe there wouldn't be that much to debate.
It probably depends on what sort of posting behavior you reckon would cause a majority of posters, liberal and conservative, to perceive someone as "evenhanded." I mentioned Dread and Bluer White because both of them commonly and voluntarily, without prodding, offer criticisms of both candidates. There are several of us who perhaps qualify as "relatively" evenhanded, in the sense of not tending to get petty or shrill when criticizing whichever candidate we oppose, and being willing to concede our preferred candidate's inadequacies readily enough IF someone else points them out first. However, I doubt most posters of the opposite political persuasion would see that as true "evenhandedness"--more just an indicator that OK, this poster isn't too unreasonable as far as obviously partisan people go.

I do agree that the forum is basically just a microcosm of American political discourse in general in this way. I don't agree with the idea that McCain and Obama are pretty much the same policy-wise, or (more speculatively) that their administrations would likely possess pretty much the same personnel dynamics. But a political discourse that tends to revolve around dueling caricature-spinning rather than issue-based dialogue isn't the way to get at that.

Of course, speaking of "chief among sinners," I've had rather little time to post lately and tend not to post in campaign-related threads when I do, so I'm not exactly speaking as a role model here.
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Old 07-29-2008, 10:23 PM   #75
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Trying to be evenhanded is dishonest.
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